As seems to happen more oft than not, just when you think you have the road ahead all mapped out you find yourself spinning out of control around an unexpected hairpin curve, detoured by road construction, or stalled in traffic behind a tragic accident.
My hairpin turn came in the form of the onset of my mother’s dementia.
My plan was to finish grad school and use my brand new library science degree to get a job as an academic librarian. Instead, I dropped out of grad school and took over my mother’s care. At first it was just monitoring her medication and checking in on her. Then it was moving in with her so that I could make sure she ate, help with showers and be on hand at night and she could remain in her own home. Then it was moving her into my home and paying for a caregiver to sit with her while I work. Now it is 24/7 hands on care.
Clearly, my plan drastically changed.
I’m still a library specialist in an academic library but the dream of being the librarian came to crashing end. For a while I felt stuck. I felt like I’d been gypped. Like I was no longer me. I had to come to the realization that I couldn’t let an unexpected twist define me. I’m still the same kooky library girl. It’s just that my priorities and responsibilities and expectations have been redirected, realigned.
So, here I am again. I’m writing again. This time, though, not about course assignments or career aspirations. This time I’m writing about me, my life, my thoughts, my day. I’ll write about my mom, my work. I’ll write about my frustrations and my pain. And, when I need an escape, I’ll write about the books I’m reading or shows I’ve watched.
Instead of writing what I think will look good to a potential employer, I’m just going to write. Maybe for the first time ever, I’m just going to be the kooky library girl whose blog is just as kooky as she is.